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Old 10-20-2018, 03:41 PM   #1
Fred Gwynne
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Default Who builds complete B230 race motors?

I, like everybody else, wants more power out of my naturally aspirated 245. I have read that a V8 is the best and cheapest way to get a legit amount of power. A good friend on mine offered me a 5.3L LS core motor to use as trade in for a rebuilt 5.3. That sounds awesome but after I estimated the price of a professionally rebuilt 5.3 motor(ATK) plus the motor mounts, transmission, fueling, ignition and all the other accessory parts as well as a guy willing to make all that stuff work will cost quite a bit of money. Although it may be worth paying that for 385 or so HP.


Another option is to have my b230 motor pulled out and shipped to a place that will rebuild the entire motor and perform modifications needed to up the HP a good amount. I'm not a motor guy but I'm thinking about things like hi-comp pistons, stronger crank and arms, enlarged valves, port and polish, lightened fly wheel etc. I won't get anywhere near 385 but it may be considerably cheaper/easier because after I get the motor back I can just have it planted into the car and the project will be completed.


Do any of you know who will work over a B230 like this? I thought there was a place in Oregon that may do this but I cannot find their website.

Please provide any thoughts/opinions about this.

I'm very seriously considering having either a V8 or essential B230 "race" motor swap.

If this topic has already been discussed then please send me a link to that thread. I'd rather not congest this forum with a question that has already been answered.


Thanks for your help.
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Old 10-20-2018, 04:20 PM   #2
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Fred Gwynne View Post
I, like everybody else, wants more power out of my naturally aspirated 245. I have read that a V8 is the best and cheapest way to get a legit amount of power. A good friend on mine offered me a 5.3L LS core motor to use as trade in for a rebuilt 5.3. That sounds awesome but after I estimated the price of a professionally rebuilt 5.3 motor(ATK) plus the motor mounts, transmission, fueling, ignition and all the other accessory parts as well as a guy willing to make all that stuff work will cost quite a bit of money. Although it may be worth paying that for 385 or so HP.


Another option is to have my b230 motor pulled out and shipped to a place that will rebuild the entire motor and perform modifications needed to up the HP a good amount. I'm not a motor guy but I'm thinking about things like hi-comp pistons, stronger crank and arms, enlarged valves, port and polish, lightened fly wheel etc. I won't get anywhere near 385 but it may be considerably cheaper/easier because after I get the motor back I can just have it planted into the car and the project will be completed.


Do any of you know who will work over a B230 like this? I thought there was a place in Oregon that may do this but I cannot find their website.

Please provide any thoughts/opinions about this.

I'm very seriously considering having either a V8 or essential B230 "race" motor swap.

If this topic has already been discussed then please send me a link to that thread. I'd rather not congest this forum with a question that has already been answered.


Thanks for your help.
I have a complete B230 long rod with 7/16 ARP rod bolts, flat top forged J&E Pistons bottom end ready and in the stand..Block bored 0,5mm, block decked, 0/0 crank, all new bearings,
new Melling oil pump... Pan not screwed down so buy can oogle at all the pretty stuff inside..

Head cleaned and ready for final machining...plan is 44/38 valves and a fairly hot cam and about 11.4 compression (static)...It is No.2 of three same spec n.a.motors. So headers and steel flywheel and clutch---flywheel here just depending on what ultimate engine management spec..For any real fun, the OEM intake manifold must go and either ITBs or 2 x 48 Webers be used. Manifold can be supplied as well..
So yeah as far as i know I'm the only one here building this sort of motor in n.a...

Output depends on head spec but seriously 25 years ago the norm for B230 is the use i do them for was about 230 hp @7100 and good broad powerband..

(and back then the target for the class for 2,0 motors was Opel's 2,0 XE which was a very nice engine and made 217-220hp and I built a 2,0 16v Saab which when finally was dailed in a rolling road dyno did make 215@7200....It used Volvo B234 intake and exhaust valves which were 34 x 32 vs Saabs 32 in and 29 exhaust..But club spec 2300 Volvos topped that for a ton less money. That's why I became more interested in Volvos: the great dollar to fun ratio.)

Does the phone number appear below?
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Old 10-20-2018, 04:25 PM   #3
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Yes number showed up..
What have you thought about gearbox and final drive ratio..
This all goes together.
What will the car mainly be used for?
How much will you do yourself?
Where are you?
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Old 10-20-2018, 06:43 PM   #4
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Naturally aspirated race motor and 245? Interesting combo.
What are your actual goals? While I’m all for building sweet race motors, it’s not always necessary.
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Old 10-20-2018, 07:45 PM   #5
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If you want to keep it NA, bravo, just be prepared to drop some cash. Josh at Yoshifab would be the best person to talk to.

If you just want more power, it's cheaper to slap a turbo on it and go go go.
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Old 10-20-2018, 08:55 PM   #6
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16v in NA application would net some good gains, no? From what I recall a basic 16v conversion on a stock long block isn't that expensive and would give a great hp/$ ratio, with Yoshifab's parts it's about the same price as a good +t solution.

What's wrong with going turbo? There's many swaps keeping lots of original, reliable, parts that are daily driven. You can make 225hp on a turbo motor all day with all Volvo stuff. Having done the deed to my own car I'd be happy to chat further.
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Old 10-20-2018, 09:26 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Fred Gwynne View Post
I, like everybody else, wants more power out of my naturally aspirated 245.
I went this way too (with John) you can have a LOT of fun with an 8v NA for a reasonable amount of money.

I like the simplicity of the setup in particular.

And if you are planning to actually drive the car, I mean really beat on it, I think he is the guy to build that kind of engine.

This is John's work, he knows his stuff, you should give him a call, just for fun.






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Old 10-21-2018, 01:50 AM   #8
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Originally Posted by brendon_ak View Post
16v in NA application would net some good gains, no? From what I recall a basic 16v conversion on a stock long block isn't that expensive and would give a great hp/$ ratio, with Yoshifab's parts it's about the same price as a good +t solution.

What's wrong with going turbo? There's many swaps keeping lots of original, reliable, parts that are daily driven. You can make 225hp on a turbo motor all day with all Volvo stuff. Having done the deed to my own car I'd be happy to chat further.
There are some real advantages to 16v...but so far the way virtually every one I've seen done by everybody misses the point by a mile...

It shouldn't be out of the question...But it does double some costs...simple becuz there's twice of a whole lotta things. twice the valves, sperings cam sprokets, and twice the real cam if the guy actually wants some power..limp-dick OEM sh!t cams hain't gonna give anybody a big stiffie.
Discussion with the Oh Pea will reveal if he wants that much power or might he be happy with 8v ...and gears and final drive..
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Old 10-21-2018, 04:08 AM   #9
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Real cams on those heads require solid lifters and sadly the only solution there is shim under bucket lifters. Expensive and very time consuming. Really, just a general pain in the ass.
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Old 10-21-2018, 04:51 AM   #10
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Real cams on those heads require solid lifters and sadly the only solution there is shim under bucket lifters. Expensive and very time consuming. Really, just a general pain in the ass.
Oh

Really?

You real sure about that?
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Old 10-21-2018, 08:25 AM   #11
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Thanks very much everyone! I just sent John a message.
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Old 10-21-2018, 09:10 AM   #12
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My b230 was built by Larry’s in Groton CT to a pretty high level, rods, pistons, crank treatment, block o-ringed etc. I bought it off a stand a friend Paul’s garage and the machine shop bill for the bottom end work was ~$3500 (not including hard parts)

Very well respected shop down here, lot of 40psi Subaru type of things. They have a lot of whiteblock and redock experience as well.
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Old 10-21-2018, 09:50 AM   #13
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Just read through 10 years of John threads



You can swap in an ls for that price, granted its going to be really ugly but its going to run and do burn outs right out of the box.
Maybe not in 2011 when it was built but, yeah. With the RSI head and rod/pistons there was +$7k in the long block.

If I were respending my money and repowering the car now it wouldn’t get an ls but it wouldn’t get a redblock either. That said my redblock performs really well and I think it’s character suits the car. Plan to enjoy as is and own/build other cars.
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Old 10-21-2018, 12:28 PM   #14
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Good luck with the engine, keep us posted on the progress, this sounds pretty cool!

And John's right with the gears, a I swapped a t5 when I put my first engine in, na b230f with a b cam, it was fun! Make sure to do suspension too.
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Old 10-22-2018, 09:05 AM   #15
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What will be the engine management?
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Old 10-22-2018, 02:16 PM   #16
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What will be the engine management?

Yeah that has been a concern of mine. I'm hoping for a motor that you can just drop into my car and all the stock stuff will work.
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Old 10-22-2018, 02:39 PM   #17
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Yeah that has been a concern of mine. I'm hoping for a motor that you can just drop into my car and all the stock stuff will work.
We will have an answer to that question.

My car is at John's place right now and it's got a charging issue, once that figured out, we can see if the stock engine management will work. It should be ok, John has done similar setup before, but we can't confirm... for now. Have you talked to John?
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Old 10-22-2018, 02:50 PM   #18
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If its a solid stage 0, +t it. If it aint, +t it anyway.
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easiest way to run 11's is to build a 9 second car and turn it down a little.
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Old 10-22-2018, 02:55 PM   #19
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Yeah that has been a concern of mine. I'm hoping for a motor that you can just drop into my car and all the stock stuff will work.
Yea but then what was the point? At least get some modified chips?
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Old 10-22-2018, 03:07 PM   #20
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Yea but then what was the point? At least get some modified chips?
The point is that engine management does what it is suppose to do, it manages the engine.

If the stock engine managment can manage the modifications, why bother?

Last edited by Vincent Gagnon; 10-22-2018 at 03:18 PM..
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Old 10-22-2018, 03:09 PM   #21
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LS swaps aren't off topic, because they're mentioned specifically in the OP.

Just be honest with what you're trying to accomplish. Redblocks are great motors, and they respond well to modest mods. They can also do well with serious mods, but at that point, you have to step back and ask if you're using the correct tool for the job.

And depending on what sort of HP you want to end up with, at some point, it's going to make more sense, both from a $$$$ spent, and a resulting reliability standpoint, to go to an LS swap. More and more people are making parts to make these fit into a 240 these days, you don't have to be a super fabricating wizard to get it done.

If you go LS, perhaps a cheap/free rebuildable core isn't the best starting point. There is something to be said about a factory built engine that's been used for 80 - 100K miles, vs. one that's been entirely gone through recently and rebuilt to an iffy spec. Either through people shaving costs, time, or just not quite knowing what they're doing.

Think about spending a little more to get a good motor you can use as is, without touching the bottom end. Personally, I think the various aluminum 5.3's are the under appreciated motors in the LS swap realm now. Hot rod guys are less enthusiastic about them because they're the 'small' motor. But they're lighter than the common steel blocked versions, barely cost any more (and a lot less than the big alu blocked versions), and once you swap the cam/do valve springs they make lots of HP.

With the right cam, you're looking at 350-ish lazy WHP. And while I'm not a good example of how to make a fast high-HP redblock, my experience with 350 whp redblocks is that they're very highly stressed motors. They do kick ass, but odds are that their ass is going to kick them sooner or later. The higher the HP went in mine, the shorter the interval was in taking it apart to fix something again. From split cylinder bores, to broken wrist pins, to blown Cometic HG's (repeatedly, sigh).

Eventually, I just decided to 'level up' and put an LS in it. It costs a bunch even if done cheaply (compared to doing similar budget stuff with an engine that does actually belong in the car) - but the results are bigger/better. At least, I hope, lol. Mine isn't running yet. I'm hoping for something like 550 - 600 hp out of mine (smallish single turbo on an alu 5.3).
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Old 10-22-2018, 03:10 PM   #22
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Originally Posted by Fred Gwynne View Post
Yeah that has been a concern of mine. I'm hoping for a motor that you can just drop into my car and all the stock stuff will work.
Ok, what year is your car?
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Old 10-22-2018, 03:12 PM   #23
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Yeah that has been a concern of mine. I'm hoping for a motor that you can just drop into my car and all the stock stuff will work.
LH2.2 and LH2.4 will work just fine at higher CRs and longer duration cams. Not ideal, as the stock timing curves are lazy.

My DD has a B-cam with the head shaved .04in, and it runs just fine on regular fuel. This is how the car should have came from the factory.

Kyle (klr142) is running a pretty hot b230 in his daily, and in their chump car. All using lh2.4 with chips.

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Yea but then what was the point? At least get some modified chips?
100% this.
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Old 10-22-2018, 03:17 PM   #24
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Originally Posted by Vincent Gagnon View Post
The point is that engine management does what it is suppose to do, it manages the engine.

If the stock engine managment can manage the modifications, why bother?
Are you putting in a different camshaft? Are you putting in a different valvetrain? Did you increase the compression ratio?
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Old 10-22-2018, 03:19 PM   #25
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Are you putting in a different camshaft? Are you putting in a different valvetrain? Did you increase the compression ratio?
Yes, yes and yes.
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